By Gavin Davids
Phase one of project to see construction of 280km line that will link Sohar and Muscat
Oman’s plans to implement a national rail network are back on track after the Tender Board floated a tender on Saturday for the key design package.
Following a cabinet reshuffle earlier this year, the project had been put on hold. Now however, ten engineering firms have been prequalified to participate in the design and construction supervision package. The ten were chosen from a total of more than 30 firms.
Although the Tender Board declined to disclose the names of the prequalified firms, the Oman Observer reported that the shortlist was made up of China Rail, Cowi and Partners, EGIS Rail, Hyundai Engineering, ILF Consulting Engineers, ITALFERR, Korea Rail, KOTRA, Mott MacDonald & Co, Parsons and Prointec Group.
A Tender Board official told the newspaper that the prequalified parties would be notified within a day or two.
Despite the progress on the design package, there remains no indication about whether the authorities planned to float the Project Management Consultancy package. This has surprised market authorities who say that it should have preceded the Design tender, if not floated simultaneously.
Ten firms have been prequalified to bid for the project management consultancy package, should the tender be floated at some point.
The Supreme Committee for Town Planning is overseeing the current design consultancy phase of the $10bn project.
The national railway network has been developed in response to Oman’s burgeoning industrial sector. Phase one of the project will see the construction of a 280km line that will link Sohar and Muscat.
The network will consist of a double track, a standard gauge system that has a provision for high-speed trains capable of reaching speeds of up to 350kph.
All trains on the network will be diesel-electric, powered by overhead power lines.For all the latest construction news from the UAE and Gulf countries, follow us on Twitter and Linkedin, like us on Facebook and subscribe to our YouTube page, which is updated daily.